Every-Thing Sports

Screwjobs are an unfortunate part of sports and our culture

Screwjobs are an unfortunate part of sports and our culture
NOLA.com/Times-Picayune

By now we all know exactly what happened at the end of regulation in the NFC Championship game. The refs blew a blatant pass interference call that could've sent the Saints to the Super Bowl. Yes, there were other plays that could have been made in the game that would have resulted in this play either being a moot point, or it not having occurred at all. Nevertheless, it happened, guilt by all parties involved was admitted, and it won't change a damn thing.

The sad part is that there's nothing new under the sun, and screwjobs are a part of that. Things like this have gone on for years in one way, shape, form, or another. Here's a look at several scewjobs that are either proven/acknowledged, or widely accepted:

2002 NBA Western Conference Finals game six

Disgraced former NBA ref Tim Donaghy

Getty Images

The Lakers were down 3-2 entering game six. They won that pivotal game 106-102 amidst a host of questionable calls. In the fourth quarter, the Lakers shot 27 free throws. Overall, they had a 40 to 25 advantage in free throw attempts in that game. The fact that convicted felon Tim Donaghy was on the ref crew that game tends to add to the idea that this game was rigged. Donaghy was sentenced to two 15-month sentences to be served concurrently and three years probation for his role in a gambling scandal on July 29, 2008. We can all thank him for forever thinking sports are rigged.

The Montreal Screwjob

Bret Hart confronting Vince McMahon backstage

wwe.com

November 9, 1997 will live in infamy for wrestling fans. Pro wrestling has pre-determined outcomes of every match, but this one was different. Bret Hart was set to leave then WWF for then rival WCW amidst a contract dispute. To complicate matters, he was the champ at the time. Vince McMahon didn't want Hart taking his title to his biggest rival who was threatening his existence. McMahon called for the bell prematurely while Shawn Michaels had Hart in his own submission hold and all hell broke loose. The picture used here was taken right before Hart ended up punching McMahon in the face. Hart didn't want to lose in Canada and has maintained he was never planning on taking the title with him when he left. McMahon, sporting a black eye, came on Monday Night Raw the following Monday and explained the situation famously saying "Bret screwed Bret" and the his bad guy persona of Mr. McMahon was born.

The Titanic

The Titanic sinking

Raymond Wong, National Geographic

Billed as the ship that would never sink, the RMS Titanic was huge disaster. It was an 883' long engineering flop that sank on it's maiden voyage. There were 2,224 people on board and more than 1,500 of them died. Most of you will only remember the movie and the song, but this was an epic fail in real life. Two hours and forty minutes after hitting an iceberg on its sixth day in service, it was nothing more than ocean debris. Craziest thing about it was that there were a lot of rich people on board due to the first class accommodations.

The NCAA

The legal mafia of college athletics

NCAA.com

Where do I even start with this load of crap? Whether it's allowing coaches to move from job to job freely while holding "student-athletes" hostage, or it's making money hand over fist while restricting those "student-athletes" from monetarily capitalizing on their image or success, the NCAA is a organization built on hypocrisy. The land is littered with stories of "student-athletes" who have been screwed by the NCAA over the years for one reason or another. The transfer portal in football has recently given a bone to football players, but it came after years of pressure. Theodore Roosevelt must be rolling in his grave.

Most Popular

SportsMap Emails
Are Awesome

Listen Live

ESPN Houston 97.5 FM
Desmond King II and Sheldon Rankins of the Texans crush Titans QB Will Levis. Photo by Justin Ford/Getty Images.

Apparently, clothes do not make the man.

The Tennessee Titans, in a screw-you move that would embarrass elementary school yard bullies, decided to wear decades-old, dead-and-gone Houston Oilers uniforms against the actual living, breathing Houston Texans on Sunday, December 17. The Titans even added an extra touch with “Oilers” in each endzone.

Nostalgia took a beating.

The Texans won 19-16 on a Ka’imi Fairbairn 54-yard walk-off field goal in the final seconds of overtime, dealing the Titans’ playoff hopes a death blow in the process (and karmic blow). Nice touch, Texans.

Tennessee hoarding the Oilers’ legacy has been an infuriating, irritating subject for Houston football fans (and legends) since the Titans began recognizing their birthright as Oilers several years ago.

How it started…

A brief history: the Oilers, who were born in 1960 as an American Football League team, moved from Houston to Tennessee in 1997. The relocated franchise actually played two seasons as the Tennessee Oilers wearing the Oilers celebrated Columbia blue uniforms. The franchise rebranded its name to Titans in 1999 and adopted new team colors.

A few years ago, the Titans began “honoring,” as they put it, their roots as Oilers. This whole Tennessee Oilers reawakening has never sat well with Houston fans who have maintained their recessive love for the original Oilers despite the Houston Texans joining the NFL in 2002.

In Houston, fans consider the Titans donning throwback Oilers uniforms Sunday as a slap in their face and AFC South declaration of war.

It’d be one thing if Nashville had any connection with the oil industry, derricks, gushers, black gold, Texas tea, big money, America’s best BBQ — or, anything that connects with Houston or the Lone Star State for that matter.

Fun fact: you wanna talk oil? Texas produces 1.8 billion barrels of crude a year, by far No. 1 in the United States. Tennessee is No. 46, producing 165,000 barrels, a comparative drop in the gas tank.

Tennessee dressing up as cosplay Oilers? Stop embarrassing yourself.

Entering the 2023 season, the Titans went nuclear by announcing they would wear throwback Oilers uniforms, complete with the word “Oilers” and derrick image on their helmets, for two home games, October 29 against the Atlanta Falcons and December 17 against, here’s a shocker, the Houston Texans.

Yeah, real subtle.

The Titans have nine home games on their schedule. They went out of their way to hold Oilers nostalgia day against Houston.

The Titans basically said, “You don’t like it, Houston? Do something about it.”

…and how it ended

Oh, Houston did. The Texans won despite starting quarterback Case Keenum, who hadn’t started a game since 2021. The Texans played without rookie sensation quarterback C.J. Stroud, electrifying rookie receiver Tank Dell, rookie defensive star Will Anderson Jr., and leading pass catcher Nico Collins.

No, in your face, Tennessee.

(By the way, the price of gas in Tennessee: $2.74 a gallon. In Houston: $2.50. At my corner Valero, $2.38.)

You couldn’t blame Texans fans for being sore winners. Here’s ESPN 97.5 FM talk host Paul Gallant rubbing the Titans’ nose in their humiliating, heartbreaking defeat:

“Some advice: If you're going to troll an entire city for a full week because 25 years ago your dad was too poor to buy his own house in an extremely affordable city, make sure you don't end up losing to a third-string QB while wearing the most valuable thing you own. Life is tough enough when you're living in the shadow of what, the 10th-best football program in the SEC this century? You'd hate to get skid marks all over your pretty clothes after showing your whole ass.”

I understand about half of that, but who cares? The Titans got what they had coming.

The perfect win to watch — almost

For sure Houston laid the smackdown on Tennessee on Sunday … except for one thing.

Football fans in the Volunteer State got to watch the game on local TV. That’s because the Texans-Titans game aired on CBS and Tegna doesn’t own a CBS affiliate in Tennessee.

Back in Houston, Tegna owns KHOU, the CBS affiliate. Tegna and DirecTV are in a pee-ing match over money, and until a settlement is reached, Tegna is blacking out its stations’ programming on DirecTV. So for the past three weeks, DirecTV subscribers haven’t been able to watch Texans games.

This wouldn’t have been so painful in recent years when the Texans sucked, but the Texans are competitive and fun to watch this year. The Texans have three more games this season and they’re all on KHOU. Reportedly no settlement is in sight, and guess what, the Super Bowl will be telecast on CBS in February.

I am a DirecTV subscriber. I wonder how much refund I’ll be getting because these two multi-billion dollar companies don’t give a crap about their customers?

I’m putting the over/under at $0.00

SportsMap Emails
Are Awesome